Welcome to Day 24 in my Album Of The Year 2021 Top 30 Countdown. I’m glad that you’re still with me. To those that have followed since the beginning, I thank you all for your support, comments, likes, and general banter over various social media channels. Just seven more days to go, including today’s pick. Where has the time gone? And will I get my Christmas shopping done in time? Just two questions that won’t be answered within today’s post. But if you want to know who has bagged my Number 7 slot, read on.
Before you do though, don’t forget that links to Number 30-8 can be found at the bottom of this post, so if you missed any of my nonsense along the way, you can catch up and enjoy the content via the links below. I’m just so kind to you all, aren’t I?
But on with the show!
White Moth Black Butterfly
“The Cost Of Dreaming”
Release Date: 28 May 2021
Score Of Much Metal: 95%
It isn’t metal. It isn’t rock. But equally, it is absolutely no surprise to me or many of my regular readers to see this record nestled deep within my top ten albums for 2021.
Featuring the beautiful voices of TesseracT’s Daniel Tompkins and Skyharbour’s Jordan Turner, ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’ is an electric and captivating release that demonstrates that good music is good music, whatever the style or genre.
Taking the blueprint of ‘Atone’, WMBB have expanded their boundaries and their experimentation, a true testament to their self-coined definition of ‘contemporary pop with progressive leanings’. There’s a greater emphasis on electronic beats, dirty bass beats, and lots more, some of which initially had me a little scared and way outside my comfort zone. However, over the months, ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’ has lost none of its spark or magic, and songs like ‘Heavy Heart’, ‘The Dreamer’, and ‘Soma’ just get better and better, sending goosebumps up my arms and shivers down my spine with alarming regularity.
With two young girls who have sadly followed their mum’s musical path more than mine, I’m well aware of the music that features on the mainstream radio stations these days. The fact is though, that if the music was one iota as powerful, genuine, and beautiful as you find on ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’, I’d listen willingly.
No, it isn’t metal, but it’s magnificent, and I’ve fallen head over heels for ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’. Sublime.
What I wrote at the time:
“‘The Cost Of Dreaming’…is adorned by one of the most beautiful album covers of the year, probably longer than that in fact.
White Moth Black Butterfly is the work of TesseracT’s vocalist Daniel Tompkins alongside his Skyharbor colleagues Jordan Turner (vocals) and guitarist/programmer Keshav Dhar as well as keyboardist/programmer Randy Slaugh and drummer Mac Christensen.
And I’ll be damned if they’ve gone and done it again. In a near mirror image of four years ago with ‘Atone’, my epiphany with ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’ came late the other evening, whilst laying on my bed in the dark. I was tired, frustrated, and generally in quite a low mood caused by several factors. And yet I found myself transported to another place; a place that I fell in love with despite it being rather alien to me if I’m honest.
When the band classify themselves as a ‘contemporary pop project with progressive and experimental music at its heart’, you kind of expect them to play around with new ideas and not rehash previous endeavours. And that’s exactly what happens with ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’. There are still plenty of rich, cinematic soundscapes, as well as lots of minimalism too. However, you also get a much greater emphasis on electronic sounds and more pronounced ‘mainstream’ pop leanings.
Ultimately it all works incredibly well. But it is quite different to ‘Atone’, so be prepared.
The songwriting is just so strong, the performances so pin sharp and passionate, the experimentation so daring, that there is no way that you couldn’t fall for its charms. White Moth Black Butterfly are an incredibly special entity and whether it’s soothing and cinematic, or bold, dark, and smothered in electronics, their music just works. But more than that, it hits me in places that very few other artists manage to reach. Genres be damned, I’m a dyed-in-the-wool metalhead and I love ‘The Cost Of Dreaming’. And if you give it a chance, so will you.”
Read the full review here.
The list this year so far…
Also, if you’ve missed my lists from previous years, you can check them out here: